This site shows how much Arctic ice will melt the next time you fly
When thinking about how to reduce or eliminate our carbon footprint, what often comes to mind is cutting back on driving or doing more recycling. But research from a new Swedish website called Shameplane has us also looking to the skies to save Arctic ice.
Shameplane, an independent project "spawned from pure personal curiosity" in 2019, calculates how much Arctic ice will melt as a result of your next plane trip. The site lets you choose how you'll be flying -- first class, business, economy and/or roundtrip -- and your starting location and ending destination. For example, a first class roundtrip flight from Copenhagen to California will, according to the site, melt approximately 24.6 square meters (about 9.5 square miles) of Arctic ice. The potential loss of ice decreases if you fly business or economy.
Of course, Shameplane doesn't just leave you crying in a pile of facts, doom and gloom. The site shows you choices -- going vegetarian, recycling, using LED lightbulbs, reusable shopping bags and more -- and how they compare against the emissions from the flight. The numbers provided presume you'll keep those sustainable habits for a year.
The researchers didn't immediately respond to request for comment.
Shameplane isn't the first website to attempt to raise awareness about climate change. Earlier this year, two US researchers from the University of Maryland created a web app that shows what 540 cities in North America will feel like in 60 years if climate change continues its progression. Celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio, natural historian David Attenborough and others have been outspoken about the state of the planet. In addition, scholars and tech giants are teaming up to tackle climate change.